They tell us the Brewers have been doing all of the little things right while winning 19 of their last 21 games. Today, they did a little thing wrong and it could have had big consequences.
With men on first and third in the bottom of the third inning of the game against the Dodgers, Jerry Hairston Jr. was given the sign to try a suicide squeeze and Josh Wilson took off for home plate with the pitch.
Hairston, though, missed the sign and instead hit a hard-grounder to third baseman Aaron Miles, which turned into a 5-4-3 double play, ending the inning for Clayton Kershaw.
Fortunately, Hairston’s grounder passed harmlessly about 10 feet wide of Wilson. If could have done some real damage if it had been right at him or, potentially much worse, if it was instead a line drive.
Hairston, who was just acquired at the end of last month and who apparently still lacks familiarity with the Brewers’ signs, was caught completely off-guard afterwards and had no idea the squeeze was on. He got a talking to in the dugout afterwards, so he’ll likely pick up on it next time.
Free agent outfielder Peter Bourjos is heading back to the Angels on a minor league deal, per a report from Steve Adams of MLB Trade Rumors. The agreement includes an invitation to spring training, but has not yet been officially confirmed by the team.
Bourjos, 31, played out a one-year gig with the Braves in 2018 and slashed .205/.239/.364 with four extra-base hits and a .603 OPS through a career-low 47 plate appearances. He showed more promise during a short-lived stint with the Giants’ Triple-A squad in the second half of the season, but elected free agency in early November and had yet to catch on with another major league club. His deal with the Angels represents a homecoming of sorts, as he played some of the best years of his career in Anaheim from 2010 to 2013 before getting traded to the Cardinals in a multiplayer swap for David Freese and Fernando Salas in 2014.
The veteran outfielder is long past his prime, but could still bring some value to the team as outfield depth behind Justin Upton, Mike Trout, and Kole Calhoun. Per Adams, he’s expected to compete for a spot as the Angels’ fourth outfielder, though he also has limited experience at DH as well.